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The Department of Pediatrics Commemorates Its 60th Anniversary

Friday, October 24, 2008

 Drs. Murray Kappelman and Misbah Khan, here with Dr. Harriet Meier (center), were given lifetime achievement awards for the contributions they've made to the Pediatrics department over the years.

The Department of Pediatrics celebrated its 60th anniversary October 24, 2008 with a day of learning and reminiscing.

"For someone who's been here just a few years, I've been very impressed with the physicians, the staff, the quality of the care, and the incredible teaching and research that goes on here," said Steven Czinn, MD, who has been chair of the department since 2006. "I think this is an incredible opportunity to reconnect with all of the physicians we've trained over the last 60 years and make sure they appreciate the changes that have occurred and the fact that they're part of our extended family and we're here to help them take care of all the children of Maryland."

Governor Martin O'Malley, Mayor Sheila Dixon, the Maryland House of Representatives and the Maryland Senate all sent proclamations offering their congratulations, which were presented at a luncheon for past and present department faculty and residents. Lunch was followed by the Abraham H. Finkelstein, MD, lecture and the Ruth W. Baldwin, MD, lecture – both named for graduates of the School of Medicine – as well as other continuing education opportunities and tours of the department. A gala dinner for more than 200 capped off the celebration.

A book commemorating the 60th anniversary made its debut during the day's festivities. Entitled "Love, Concern and Excellence," it was put together by a committee of faculty members and staff in the department, at the suggestion of Dr. Czinn. "We had on our committee Drs. Misbah Khan, Prasanna Nair and Alice Heisler, all of whom have been in the department through much of this history, so we had detailed memories that were extremely valuable," explained Gail Olsen, RN, PhD, who oversaw the book project. Each section of the book concentrates on the milestones that took place from a pediatric perspective during the tenure of each of the department's six chairmen, from the first chair, Dr. Edmund Bradley, up to Dr. Czinn.

Even as his department celebrated the past, though, Dr. Czinn was looking toward the future. "Our first 60 years have been incredible and have given us a great platform to move in the direction we want to move in," he said. "We are ranked 23rd out of 100 departments of pediatrics nationally, and we're definitely looking to move into the top 20 – and hopefully even the top 10 – within the next five years."

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 Dr. Jerome Imburg was in the first class of residents to graduate from the department in 1948.

 Dr. Susan Prevas, resident and chief resident from 1978-82, proudly introduced her colleagues to son James, who is a third year medical student currently doing his Pediatrics rotation.

 The Pediatrics residents and chief residents took a break from their training to dance the night away at the gala.

 Faculty members with more than 25 years of service were recognized during the gala festivities.

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